Hi :) I'm an international student planning to apply for the Interactive Design and Game Development MFA at SCAD. I've written a SOP draft and I need to make it shorter. I've read through it so many times I don't know what I can add or remove anymore :(. Would love to have someone's help or opinion...
Prompt: The statement should be a 500- to 750-word overview of the applicant's academic and professional accomplishments and should demonstrate a high level of interest in and a highly developed understanding of the discipline. The applicant should describe knowledge of the discipline, approach to past work, qualifications for graduate study and intended focus, as well as personal and professional goals.
my passion for art
I'd always had the passion for art since the age most kids pick up a set of pencils and scribble along on paper; the advancements in technology in the past decades has also resulted in advancements in the way I like to create art. From my origins in traditional media, like paints and pencils, it advanced to digital media, sketching away on tablets; then it progressed from two-dimensional art into three-dimension; creating stories with moving images rather than still ones; creating pre-rendered art to constantly changing, real-time renders. Now I am venturing towards taking it a step further, to a point where people can not just interact but also communicate with what I make.
My passion led me to pursue my Bachelor's Degree in Animation at SAE Institute XXX, which I completed with distinction in early 2017. The program I picked involved three years of education fit into two years of intensive learning, as a result helping me train myself to be productive under situations of high pressure and tight deadlines.
Throughout my two and a half years at SAE, I ended up doing 3 animation studio projects, and 8 collaborative projects, over half of them being games. I took the initiative to get some basic knowledge in scripting games for myself, by taking elective lessons for C# in Unity. In addition, the courses tended to require a great deal of group work, and I used this opportunity to build my leadership skills.
At the same time, I made it my mission to do some work outside of the university and to find challenging internships to take up during my undergraduate career in an attempt to develop practical experience in the industry. Throughout those years I interned at various companies in roles such as social media graphics artist, animator, 3D character designer, and UX designer. By doing this I was able to better understand the industry and gained experience which complimented and tested my beliefs as a designer. I also participated in volunteer activities and led teams at regional events, which prepared me for my job for the next two years after graduation in the hectic events industry of XXX.
Extremely fresh out of university, I received an opportunity to work at XXXX, one of the leading technology labs in XXX. We design and develop digital products used by people at events and expos in many countries. This gave me ample opportunities to become exposed to different avenues of technology. I began as a 3D and concept designer for games and interactive installations for events and built my way up to actually creating them. By the time I got promoted to interactive producer and stage show director-in-training, I had experience in handling entire applications for multiple installations, using technologies such as Phidget RFIDs, Optitrack cameras, multitouch displays with marker detection, Arduinos, laser projections with radar touch and more. Some of my projects also involved developing screen content for award shows, AR stages, and sports events.
Although my work experience is fruitful and fulfilling, at some level I feel like there are many gaps in my knowledge, which I am hoping I would be able to fill with education at SCAD. While I have work experience in interactive design, I don't have formal training in it, which has resulted in me missing out on learning a lot of essentials to this practice.
I wish to create experiences for people that will enable them to immerse themselves with my art with most of their senses; stories and narratives that they can enjoy as though they're a part of it. Products that require effort on the part of the developer for the sake of the simplicity and ease-of-use for the user. I want to help make people experience things that they would not in real life; action, mythical creatures, fantastical worlds that they could only see through CGI. Creating an empathetic connection with users and making them feel like they're in a Disney movie with their favorite characters or in the middle of a zombie apocalypse.
I would like to use my skills in 2D and 3D motion design paired with knowledge in games and user experience to design across a broad range of platforms for games, interactive installations or stage shows and contribute to the development of immersive experiences to tell stories, teach people, and give them therapeutic experiences.
As a person who enjoys cultures and dreams to travel and explore opportunities, I want more people around the world to witness my work. From what I've heard, Savannah is a haven for art lovers. Being born in a city that also has quite a developed art scene, I would love to explore how this culture has evolved in other countries and gain a perspective towards it on a global level.
These are just some of the many reasons why I have decided to apply for the Interactive Design and Game Development Master's program SCAD. It presents itself as the ideal multicultural platform for me to receive immense exposure and acquaint with other professionals in the industry; a hunting ground for me to hone my current skills, explore future ones and branch out further into facets of interactivity that I have not yet had a chance to play with. At SCAD, I believe I would gain the necessary skills to become a recognizable figure in the field of design and inspiration to produce original work that will be appreciated by those who experience it.
From my experience in working in the industry for almost two years, I know that it is interactive design that would complement my unquenchable appetite for creativity, imagination, and curiosity towards people and technology. I aim to be a designer in a company that employs cutting edge technology and stretches it to its limits to create beautiful digital experiences for people in the world.
Within the next ten years, I aim to be an influencer of design. Get to the point where people cite my work as inspiration. I aim to be a freelance developer, working with various companies while traveling and being inspired by various cultures, as is the way I know I work best. I like to open my mind to opportunities in different places and spread my work to the community.
I would like to study Masters in Interactive Design and Game Development at SCAD in order to gain a strong academic background of my profession and to have a deeper insight into its fundamentals and principles. Above all, I hope to become a more competent interactive designer.